Housing charities concerned over difficulties councils find in housing tenants

  • The widespread practise of councils paying private landlords to housing tenants makes it difficult for councils housing tenants in a market were landlords hold balance of power, says housing charities.

    Shortage of social housing means that councils are offering landlords cash payments of up to £4,000 to accommodate homeless families, reports the Guardian./images/briefing/money.jpg

    Councils in the south-east of England and London are now advertising cash incentives to private landlords to get them to agree to let council-vetted tenants for two years.

    In Haringey in north London and the nearby borough of Barnet , private sector landlords are being offered one-off payments of up to £3,000 if they sign up to a two-year tenancy.

    The housing charity Shelter said the offer of cash payments showed that the balance of power had switched between councils and landlords. "Landlords don't need local authorities, but local authorities need them," said Zorana Halpin, a policy officer at Shelter.

    "Local authorities used to procure large volumes of temporary accommodation from private landlords through leases - the rents they could pay were in line with market rates and it meant no void periods for landlords, so councils had a bit of negotiating power and the deal was attractive to landlords. The fact that councils are prioritising their spending to make sure people are being housed is a good thing, but we are concerned that they have limited resources and are having to use some of them to pay these incentives. Ultimately, the only long-term solution is to build more affordable homes."

    David Lawrenson, a housing consultant has said: "There is supposed to be some kind of agreement to stop councils competing with each other, but these landlord incentives suggest that they are not working, as they still seem to be competing with each other to try to get that stock in. It's only going to get worse as rents continue to rise."

    Melanie Rees, head of policy at the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), said councils had been given more freedom to help homeless people by finding them a home in the private rented sector. However, benefit cuts have reduced the rents paid to private landlords. "But welfare reform - in particular the benefit cap - has cut the amount of benefits that people receive and made private landlords in some areas more reluctant to let to claimants," said Rees.

    "In some areas, offering incentives to private landlords may well be cheaper than using temporary accommodation - and a better option for the tenant than being stuck in a poor quality B&B."

    What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions

Related articles

  • Read More

    THE ONS PLANS TO CHANGE THEIR DECISION TO MAKE HOUSING ASSOCIATIONS PUBLIC BODIES

    According to reports by 24 Housing, the ONS said the following:Gavin Smart, Chartered Institute of Housing's deputy chief executive also said:"Although we have been expecting this decision for some...

  • Read More

    RECENT ANALYSIS FINDS THAT THE HELP TO BUY SCHEME HAS ADDED TO THE INFLATION OF HOUSE PRICES

    The analysis of the Help to Buy Scheme revealed the following:The chief executive of Paradigm Housing Group, Matthew Bailes, said:" ... clearly, it worked well for developers, and for providers, it...

  • Read More

    A NORTH WALES COUNCIL REVEALED THEIR WAITING LIST FOR NEW HOMES HAS REACHED BREAKING POINT

    The north Wales Council revealed their waiting list for new homes has reached "breaking point".According to Clare Budden, Flintshire Council's community enterprise chief officer said:"There are...

  • Read More

    HOMELESSNESS POLICY IS UNDER REVIEW IN A NORTHAMPTONSHIRE COUNCIL

    Kettering Borough Council has amended its letters to homeless residents to let them know of their right to request a temporary accommodation review.According to an ombudsman, Michael King:"People in...

  • Read More

    FINANCIAL CONSTRAINTS HAVE CAUSED THE CLOSURE OF MANY CHILDREN AND YOUTH CENTRES

    Local Government Association (LGA) made the following findings:Chair of the LGA's children and young people board, Richard Watts, said: "The reality is that services for the care and protection of...

  • Read More

    RESIDENTS OF BUILDINGS IN LEDBURY ESTATE, SOUTHWARK, SOUTH LONDON WILL BE MOVED OUT TEMPORARILY

    The buildings in Ledbury Estate in Southwark have been constructed in a similar way to Ronan Point, a tower block in Newham which collapsed in 1968 as a result of a gas explosion, killing three. An...

  • Read More

    THERE IS A DECLINE IN THE HOUSING MARKET IN LONDON AND OTHER PARTS OF THE SOUTH EAST OF ENGLAND

    The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) made the following findings:Chief Economist at Rics, Simon Rubinsohn:"Sales activity in the housing market has been slipping in the recent month...

  • Read More

    REPORT FINDS THAT PEOPLE ARE INTENSELY SUFFERING FROM LACK OF AFFORDABLE HOMES IN SCOTLAND

    According to the report by "Shelter":Shelter's deputy director, Alison Watson, said:"This report shows the disproportionate impact of Scotland's housing crisis on young people and private renters who...

  • Read More

    NEW REPORT BY THE PUBLIC ACCOUNT COMMITTEE IN WALES COMMENDS HOUSING ASSOCIATIONS

    The report which was put together after nine months of inquiries stated the following:Nick Ramsey, Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, said:"Generally, we found governance and regulation within...

  • Read More

    LONDON COUNCIL URGES THE GOVERNMENT TO MAKE MEASURES TO END LETTING FEES FOR PRIVATE RENTERS

     The London council say urgent action is needed because the government has not provided "a clear timescale to introduce its own measure", Letting Agent Today, reports.Last year, the government had...

Responding to the DWP Consultation:  Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "I thought this briefing was very good and very useful.  The presentation was clear, well argued and I always find Michael gives me food for thought even if I don't agree with everything he says.  I really like the way he facilitates a discussion in the room and I learn as much from other participants as I do from the presenter which is always good. Right length, right tone." R.P. - Richmond Fellowship

 

Briefing Signup